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Wednesday, September 20


“You’ll use the old rubble…to…rebuild the foundations.”
Isa 58:12 TM

CONFESSIONS OF A SECRET SINNER (3)

Lie number two: God won’t use you now. Julie Ann Barnhill continues: “Women long to have their lives count for something more eternal than their jean size, or updated qualifications on a résumé. Yet many times we judge ourselves by these superficial standards. Think of all the times you’ve gazed in a mirror and despised the woman staring back at you; times you’ve bought into the lie that because of your failures God can’t use you. I’m living proof that He can and does use us despite our past mistakes. David said when ‘I confessed my sins…you forgave my guilt’ (Ps 32:5 NCV). The worst sins in Scripture can never drive a wedge between you and Christ’s love, if you confess them and seek forgiveness. God’s truths can dispel the Enemy’s deceit. Take hold of this promise: ‘I’ll give you a full life in the emptiest of places…You’ll use the old rubble…to…rebuild the foundations’ (Isa 58:11-12 TM). Lie number three: When people find out what you’ve done, they’ll never love, understand, or forgive you. Some you considered friends may leave…It happened to me…Friends dropped me when they learned the depth of my messes. And I once dropped a friend after learning some uncomfortable details about her life. Friends come and go, but a true friend sticks by you like family (See Pr 17:17). I wasn’t faithful to my friend, but Jesus always is. Time and again He promised never to leave us. Even ‘if we give up on him, he does not give up—for there’s no way he can be false to himself’’” (2Ti 2:13 TM).

Thursday, September 21

“You forgave me! All my guilt is gone.”
Ps 32:5 NLT

CONFESSIONS OF A SECRET SINNER (4)

David said, “I confessed all my sins to you…And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone.” Julie Ann Barnhill writes: “If you’re tired of pretending you have it all together, it’s time to act. For too long Christian women in particular have believed they’re the only ones dealing with shameful issues, agonizing regrets, and skeletons in their closet. Once we open up to God, ourselves, and others, we experience exhilarating freedom and peace. A woman wrote to me: ‘I had an abortion when I was eighteen. Nobody knows. For years I marked the date on my calendar and grieved for the child nobody knew about, and the young woman who bore the guilt alone. No more! Now I know I’m not alone, and for the first time in my life I truly believe God is bigger than my secret—and He’s willing to forgive.’ Secrets only hold power when they’re hidden. Once they’re revealed in the light of God’s love they lose their control. However, there are some things to consider before opening up to someone: (1) If that person repeats things others have shared in confidence, guess who’s up next for discussion? (2) Beware of someone who’s apt to offer unsolicited advice, then take offense when it’s ignored. (3) Stay away from somebody who tries to ‘fix’ you, and tells you not to worry about your secrets. Instead, look for someone who: (a) has good sense and knows when to ‘back off’ and/or move forward when you’re upset; (b) is up-front about their own struggles; (c) is quick to listen and slow to speak; (d) undergirds their words and counsel with scriptural truths.”